James Harden Skipping Team USA Basketball This Summer to Prepare With Rockets After Westbrook Trade

USA Basketball Men's National Team Training Camp
USA Basketball Men's National Team Training Camp / Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The NBA offseason shifted the dynamic of the entire league and a number of stars are looking to put in a lot of work before the new year starts.

For one, Houston Rockets All-Star James Harden has decided not to play for USA Basketball this summer to prepare for the major transitions within the organization.

With Russell Westbrook coming over from Oklahoma City, significant adjustments are needed within Houston's offensive game plan and rotation. Luckily, Brodie and Harden have some prior chemistry between them from their days on the Thunder.

Harden has played for the national team before. He was on Team USA's roster when they won gold at the 2012 Olympics and when they won the FIBA tournament in 2014.

This will be his second time away from the team as he also played hooky from the 2016 Olympics.

As Harden and Westbrook prepare for the upcoming season, it's easy to get excited thinking about what these two will be able to accomplish when they hit the hardwood together again. While their styles of play aren't exactly complementary, both players are capable of dominating a game on the offensive end, making it impossible to predict how scary this team can be until they compete when their chemistry is fully formed.